Guns are greatly entrenched in American culture and the country’s political debates. The United States Constitutions to the Second Amendment provide American citizens the right to bear arms. Some adults in the country say they own a firearm.

At the same time, newly-elected United States President Joe Biden, as well as other politicians, proposed new restrictions on gun access earlier this year to address gun violence ranging from the drastic rise of murder rates in major U.S. cities to mass shootings. Listed below are key findings of American citizens’ attitudes about firearm violence, policies, and other topics.

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Four-in-ten American adults indicate they live in a house with a firearm, including 30% who say they own one

There are differences in firearm ownership rates depending on political party affiliation, geography, gender, and other essential factors. For example, 44% of Republicans, as well as Republican-leaning groups indicate they own a gun, compared to twenty percent of Democrats and Democrat-leaning organizations.

Men are more likely to own one than women. At least 30% of men owns a firearm versus 22% of the women owners. At least 40% of adults in rural areas report owning a weapon, compared to more or less 25% living in suburban areas. According to Federal data, weapon sales have risen drastically in recent years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Instant Criminal Background Check System, in 2020 alone, monthly background checks for purchases were at least 20% higher compared to the same month of the previous years. In July 2020, the system recorded the largest comparative percentage point difference – 3.6 million background checks completed, a 44% increase compared to July 2019 background checks.

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Personal protection is the main reason why owners say they own firearms

According to surveys conducted in 2019, most weapon owners cite personal protection or safety as the primary reason why they own a gun. At least 60% said that it is an open-ended question. Smaller shares gave other reasons why they own a gun, including non-specific sport or recreation, hunting, collection purposes, a family heirloom, or the firearm was related to their jobs.

Half of the American public sees gun-related violence as a big issue in the country today

That is comparable to sharing about the Federal budget deficit, violent crimes, illegal immigration, as well as the COVID-19 outbreak. Only one problem is viewed as a significant issue by most Americans: health care affordability. More or less 20% of American adults say firearm violence is a fairly significant issue. About three out of ten indicate it is a small issue or not an issue at all.

Attitude about firearm violence differ by ethnicity, race, community type, and party

At least 80% of African-American adults say gun violence is a significant issue in the country. It is the largest share of any ethnic or racial group as of the moment. By comparison, six out of ten adults of Hispanic descent (58%) and White adults (39%) view firearm violence this way.

Because of sample size limitations, information for Asian-Americans is not readily available. Democrats or Democrat-leaning organizations are more likely to see this type of violence as a significant issue compared to GOP-leaning organizations and Republicans.

And at least two-thirds who describe their place as urban say the same, compared to 45% of suburban communities and 35% of people living in rural areas. Not only that, but according to gun stores, sales also differ depending on whether the place has a high crime rate or not.

Half of the American population favors a stricter gun law

Smaller shares say laws about ownership are about right or should be less strict. A decline in the percentage of the American population indicates gun laws should be stricter. Opinions today are in line with what people were saying in 2017. Among the GOP side, views have shifted.

There is a good chance that GOP-leaning people would say firearms laws should be stricter compared to stricter. By comparison, in 2019, a significant share of GOP-leaning people favored stricter laws compared to less stringent regulations. Both years, more or less half of the Republicans said the current regulations were about right. Today, most Democrat-leaning individuals say regulations should be stricter, although this percentage has declined slightly from previous years.